Moved To BlueHost Media Temple Grid Server Overrated

Its been a bad week for me. I moved to Media Temple hosting 4 days back, yesterday night I moved again to BlueHost. In my hurry I was unable to backup my previous post I apologize to everyone for the lost comments. My Site has been horribly slow and constantly down for 2 full days and the average response time for the site was more than 8 secs (ideally it shouldn’t cross 1sec). While the initial experience with MT was good i.e. buying and setting things up. The support later turned out to be very slow and poor MT doesn’t have a 24X7 support since I am an international customer they took more than 24 hours to reply to any of my questions. BlueHost was a refreshing change I clicked on the Live Chat button on the main page and was immediately connected with a sales person who clarified some of my doubts later I again used Live Chat to get help configuring the MX records since I use Google Apps to maintain my Email. I like to keep track of my site uptime and response time and I use multiple Site monitoring services like Site24X7, mon.itor.us and Pingdom. I highly recommend Pingdom to anyone who is serious about maintaining and monitoring their sites. Pingdom played a huge role in my moving from dreamhost and MT to bluehost. I can already see a huge differences in the response time (its all below 1 sec) and page load and my Pingdom data also confirms this. (Since My DNS is still propagating it still seems a bit slow in Britain and Europe)

Overall MT has been a bad experience for me. For the high cost of hosting it is not worth it. Though they themselves admitted that they were overwhelmed with support questions and hence replies were being delayed. But what I cant understand is why they can’t have a 24X7 support like dreamhost or live chat support like bluehost and the ability to mark support questions as High, Critical, medium etc.The only positive part was they were very professional in handling the issues and immediately refunded my money back.

The most funny or should I say stupid thing that I did was that I had done my research for the past 3 months (using data collected from site24x7 mon.itor.us) and found that bluehost had better uptime and (more important) response time for the sites they hosted over MT. In fact I even commented on this on paul stamatiou’s blog 2 months back and wanted to do a blog post about it but never got down to doing it.

Hey paul I been monitoring your site (MT)and a few others (bluehost, dreamhost etc) using moitor.us and various other tools. I found your response time(MT Grid) a bit slow. I eliminated sites hosted on dedicated accounts. I found that people hosted on bluehost seemed to have much better response time. I will do a write up shortly when I get back home from office. what are your thoughts on this?

So why did I still go for MT ? Well to be frank I am got sucker into the Grid hosting marketing, everyone seemed to be telling how good they were and able to handle the DIGG effect etc. (heck dreamhost handled the DIGG effect for me without a glitch) I now realised that MT grid server is nothing but a marketing bluff.

44 Responses

Just as a slight correction, I am not on the (mt) grid; I have a dedicated solution. As for (mt) 24 hour support, their homepage says “(877) 578-4000 24/7 Support”.

@paul thanks … then it makes them look even more bad.

Sorry to hear about all the problems. I hate it when I can’t get a hold of tech support, especially when it’s with an issue I know I can resolve myself and don’t have access to do it. I’m glad things are back up and running again.

ycuk, i hate moving hosts, i can’t imagine doing it twice in one week. bluehost has it’s quirks (CNAME, sending them a driver’s license for SSH access), but overall I’ve been very happy with them.

The issue was not necessarily the (gs) Grid-Service, but from the traceroute that you provided us, the issue was with Sprintlink. Here is the traceroute you provided:

1

Sorry, it looks like Andrew’s comment got cut off. He asked me to put this up on pastebin for you: http://pastebin.com/fb1740e
–Arman Z. – (mt) Media Temple, Inc.

great ..things look pretty fast now..Still, i think you missed demo blog and something wrong with your latest comments plugin

Congrats on the move! Even I too thought the same, your response time was a bit slow, when I commented on the post where you wrote about the move to MT. Now its back to normal. As Kanak pointed out, latest comments section looks blank.

I’m sorry to hear about your problems with (mt), but I think you reacted a little fast without following up the problems. I’m with Media Temple and have never had downtime, never had a slow connection and never had ANY problems with 24/7 support, even though I am UTC, so +7 hours to them.
They answer trivial questions within a few hours on their support page and even take my calls. Sure, I’ve nevr had the “digg effect”, but if for some unknown reason I did, I know it’d hold it. It’s peace of mind and for that, I’m willing to pay.

I’m sure any company can get overwhelmed sometimes, it’s a shame you didn’t think of that before making them out to be bad hosts.

I’m using GoDaddy for my hosting, but I’m having doubts. Several of my sites are too slow.

Your post has helped my clear up a few things. Thank you, Arpit.

Sorry to hear about your problem with Dreamhost in the first place, I am with them, so when I saw your original post I thought I better get some stats to see what my up time is like. And in the week I have been monitoring dreamhost has only gone down once for a short period…and the request time has been averaged at 0.070, which seems pretty good for a cheap host. Better luck with blue host though.

I use bluehost too. Is a really good web host provider

WOW! I am still with ANHosting.com. I was thinking to create a new e-commerce site with MediaTemple.net.

I did not choose bluehost for just one reason. They don’t have option to upgrade to dedicated server.

By the way, I am still in China. Do you miss me? ;-)

Do i need to be worried??

I almost got sucked into MT Grid Service and Mosso, both of which were marketed as the best thing ever in web hosting thanks to having the resources of an entire enterprise-level server cluster, etc.

But after reading a ton of blog and forum posts from unhappy customers, it seems like they have a lot of bugs to work out!

when I was in the similar situation I was thinking about going to MediaTemple and luckily I did not.
I left Dreamhost shared hosting and went to zone.net to get my own VPS. works without a flaw!

it looks like your site hasn’t got stable yet .time and again i get this IP not found error :(

Well, thanks for the advance warning. I was planning to move over to MT grid next month. Life saver!

Glad to see your back up and running!

@pranjal I think their Hosting is comparable to most decent web hosting providers the $20 per month is not justified.

But Customer Support is pathetic.

yes 20$ deserve more then just customer support.

I recently moved my blog from wordpress to its own domain. And guess who I chose to host my blog – yep, Media Temple. And guess what else? Yes, things are running very, very slowly, and I was not able to run backups (although one has just run and finished now!) I though IE7 was the problem, and in fact, when I ran a backup from Firefox, it worked first time. I’m in Italy, by the way.

I’m a bit disappointed with MT for the moment, but I have read great things about them. I shall persist, but I will contact support and see what they can tell me. It could be my setup which is not perfect…

Ok, quick update. I contacted support and they responded like greased lightening! (Very impressive) Anyway, it seems as though they have a computational resources issue at the moment, which means, I think, that their system is becoming overloaded. Sounds as though the marketing worked!

Their engineers are on the job now and they are beefing up the system by adding 25% more nodes. I’ll see how things go and I shall post back here when things get better. I’m pretty sure they will.

@Alex good for you I also suggest you sign up at Pingdom and check your sites response time. I can frankly tell you that my Shared Hosting gives better Response time than MT Grid Server.

@Jacob – things seem to be working OK with MT again, but I will do as suggest and sign up with Pingdom. I still like the Grid Server idea, but I do hope it is more than marketing hype.

While Bluehost does get lots of good reviews, I’m a bit wary of low cost services, so although $20 a month seems a lot, I believe that I should be getting a bit more for my money. And I still like the MT functions and features.

Regards

Dreamhost is working good for me till now, some of friends use bluehost and never had any issue with that also.

MT, I thought its some very good host with that grid publicity thing and steep price…I guess I was wrong. Gud info provided by you. pingdom I am coming ;)

Please tell me that did you had to pay all the amount at once or monthly. I am talking about blueHost. I have confusion and they don’t seem to respond.

Just to confort you in your choice; I’m currently moving away from MediaTemple and their Grid-server plan.

Like you, I’m an european customer and response times are awful accross the ocean (~2sec) and most sites (worpdress, Joomla, Drupal, ..) take about 10 to 30sec to be displayed.

For what I could see, the database is as fault. Websites without db are running (relatively) fine. I’m willing to give their “database container” (isolation of db ressources) a try for one month ($20/month). If that proves to be source of the problem, I’ll definitely move away. I’ll paying the price of a dedicated server with the performances of a shared one..

I am on MT DV 3.0. Apart from the Customer support ( i am international too, BD ) everything else looks fine.

It was a little hard to get used to the Plesk environment, but things are good now.

Just another question -

Does BlueHost handle all your traffic properly ? Could you please shoot me an email, so that I can talk a little about the traffic deal.

Take off this comment if you want to.

@Ehab I haven’t had more than 5 mins downtime the entire one month and they have good tech support. Plus like I mentioned their response time is faster than MT.

@nidrig You might have a point there. When I was on MT most of the time the error was unable to connect to the Database Server.

with bluehost, are you on their basic plan or did you get the high-CPU-time package ($20 per month, instead of $8)?

the most attractive thing about gridserver, as a bluehost customer, would be if we could get rid of the “CPU limit exceeded” errors. are you having any problems with that?

beautiful site design, btw…

@p I wasn’t aware they had a high Cpu package I have never seen the CPU limit exceeded errors ?

they do have one, it’s just not advertised.

but maybe your site is so well designed you have fewer processes running?

if you read the bluehost forums, CPU errors are daily occurrences for many wordpress blogs on bluehost.

@pm Interesting maybe I need to look around a bit. Thanks for the tip.

Thanks for posting your experiences with BlueHost and Media Temple. I had been considering MT until I researched them. I subscribed to their Media Temple’s blog RSS feed, which includes status/trouble reports (they are omitted from the blog Web page), where I observed frequent outages and other problems.

I had been satisfied with Blue Host at first. Unfortunately BlueHost kept stopping my site because of CPU use (or so it reported; I believe that high use by other sites on the same shared server were causing the overages). I am intrigued by the report in the comments here, that BlueHost offers a “high CPU use” plan. Hmmm …!

Thanks.
i think you missed demo blog and something wrong with your latest comments plugin

My experience with Bluehost was nothing short of a disaster.
I could write a novel on how pathetically poor their service had been for me.

The short version of my experience can be read here.

http://inetintegrity.com/weblog/?p=1

@Crazy Penguin I moved from shared to dedicated hosting on Media Temple the irony. Bluehost screwed me and mediatemple DV sucks dedicated is the way to go. try slicehost if you can manage a linux box on your own.

Thanks for the tip.

if you read the bluehost forums, CPU errors are daily occurrences for many wordpress blogs on bluehost.

I just moved to MT and now I read this post !!
As you mentioned, support seems to be pretty bad, haven’t got a response from my first query even after 30 hours.. i guess that is MT’s way of welcoming new users !

Meanwhile I just ran a whois query on your domain, it shows that you are on MT ? Did you move back to MT ?

@Venu yeah I moved to MT Dedicated Virtual Hosting even that sucks it costs whooping $50 per month, support is still pathetic. MT is just overrated.